Every hour of every day people around the world are living with and working to resolve food safety issues. Here is a sampling of current headlines for your consumption, brought to you today with the support of iwaspoisoned.com.
Resistant bacteria found worldwide
Researchers in Berlin recently reported in Eurosurveillance that multidrug-resistant bacteria “have reached the food chain and are of increasing concern for public health.”
The scientists examined carbapenemase-producing bacteria.
“In the past six years, it has become obvious that the occurrence of carbapenemase-producing bacteria is no longer limited to clinical settings. Increasing numbers of carbapenemase-producing bacteria have been isolated from the environment, wild birds and companion and food-producing animals all over the world.”
The study cited an example of E. coli from a Venus clam that was harvested in the Mediterranean Sea in Italy and purchased at a German retail market. “This emphasizes the importance of the food production chain in the global spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria,” according to the researchers.
“It has to be taken into account that Venus clams are also served as a raw appetiser and that seafood is preferred raw in some regions, providing ideal conditions for the transmission and spread of the carbapenemase-producing bacteria or a transfer of the respective plasmids.
“These results confirm previous observations that carbapenemase-producing bacteria have reached the food chain and are of increasing concern for public health.”
The investigators analyzed 160 seafood samples from 12 retail outlets in Berlin from December 2015 to August 2016. They found 45 Enterobacteriaceae from the samples, with Klebsiella pneumoniae in 13, E coli in 12, Enterobacter cloacae in 6, and Citrobacter freundii in 5.
New diarrhea guidelines
The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) released new guidelines for diagnosing and managing infectious diarrhea. Diarrhea is defined by the World Health Organization as three or more loose or liquid stools in 24 hours, or more frequently than is normal any given person. The guidelines are designed to guide primary care physicians and other healthcare providers.
Testing advances have made it possible to detect organisms that are unfamiliar to many physicians. The guidelines note that, in such cases, the consultation of an infectious diseases physician should be considered.
According to the report, an estimated 2 billion to 4 billion episodes of acute diarrhea occur worldwide each year. Many of those cases are from contaminated food or water.
The previous guidelines from 2001 say that most patients who have diarrhea don’t need to be tested. Now testing is recommended for vulnerable groups such as children under age 5, the elderly, immunocompromised patients, and those with bloody diarrhea, severe abdominal pain or signs of sepsis.
Natasha and Scott Mueller purchased an all-inclusive vacation from Apple Vacations that resulted in the Muellers suing the company for breach of warranty, negligence and medical care insurance benefits, because of food poisoning.
The trip was for the couple’s honeymoon, to Secrets Resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. After returning from the trip, Natasha was experiencing unexplained medical issues such as numbness, pain, nausea and fatigue.
Her doctors diagnosed Ciguatere poisoning. This so-called fish poisoning is a foodborne illness caused by eating certain reef fish whose flesh is contaminated with a toxin. The toxins are made by dinoflagellates, like Gambierdiscus toxicus, which live in tropical and subtropical waters.
A U.S. district Court judge granted Apple Vacations request that the case be dismissed.
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